China signs off on Medtronic, Covidien deal; Ekso to clear robotic exoskeleton with FDA;

@FierceMedDev: ICYMI: Illumina and Sequenom lay ongoing prenatal diagnostic patent feud to rest. Article | Follow @FierceMedDev

@EmilyWFierce: Britain's BTG scoops up pulmonology outfit PneumRx for up to $475M. Story | Follow @EmilyWFierce

> The Chinese Ministry of Commerce has cleared the Medtronic ($MDT) acquisition of Covidien ($COV). After a signoff from the EU and U.S. regulators in recent weeks, the deal still needs to be sanctioned by Ireland and garner approval from each company's shareholders at meetings on Jan. 6. Release

> Scottish synthetic bone graft startup Sirakoss has raised $4.8M in a Series A round led by Epidarex Capital. Release

> The already-marketed robotic exoskeleton from microcap Ekso Bionics will need to be cleared by FDA, following a change in the regulatory status of the device and others similar to it. The company will submit a 510(k) notification for it this month. The agency will allow the Ekso exoskeleton to continue to be sold while the filing is under review. Release

> Fitness tracker startup Misfit Wearables has raised $40 million from investors including Chinese smartphone giant Xiaomi. Story

Biotech News

@FierceBiotech: Party time at Array as Novartis bows out of PhIII binimetinib cancer program. Report | Follow @FierceBiotech

@JohnCFierce: College students with big ideas can shoot for some seed money from Xfund. Harvard-based--$100M. More from the WSJ | Follow @JohnCFierce

@DamianFierce: Blincyto, which sounds like it's related to the cells of blintzes, is the name of Amgen's new cancer drug. More | Follow @DamianFierce

> Scientists herald a breakthrough in reversing spinal damage. More

> J&J launches PhII lymphoma study for daratumumab. Item

> Biotech partners at Allena fund a march toward PhIII with $25M venture round. Report

Pharma News

@FiercePharma: Powdered measles vaccine, safe in PhI, could aid vaccination in developing world. FierceVaccines article | Follow @FiercePharma

@EricPFierce: Sanofi, Viehbacher accused of kickback scheme in whistleblower suit. News | Follow @EricPFierce

@CarlyHFierce: Universal flu vaccine developer BiondVax mulling IPO. Globes | Follow @CarlyHFierce

> Incyte's Jakafi gets a boost with FDA nod for bone marrow disease. More

> Ranbaxy now faces product bans in Europe. Story

> Bayer and J&J push back against consolidation of Xarelto suits. News

Vaccines News

> Powdered measles vaccine, safe in PhI, could aid vaccination in developing world. Article

> Universal flu vax developer BiondVax mulling IPO: Globes. Item

> GSK, NIH gear up for Ebola vaccine trial expansion after success in PhI. Report

> Merck, NewLink Ebola vaccine trial shows no serious side effects so far. Story

> Novartis' Fluad off the hook in Italy following 19 deaths. Article

Pharma Manufacturing News

> EMA clears Novartis Fluad in deaths in Italy. Item

> Johnson Matthey buys former Glaxo facility in Scotland. More

> Strides Arcolab begins construction of $60M Malaysia facility. Report

> Some Indian drugmakers routinely toss out bad test results: Bloomberg. Story

> Germany, EU, join U.S. in banning India-made Ranbaxy products. Article

Suggested Articles

The FDA disclosed over 60 safety reports related to intra-aortic balloon pumps manufactured by Maquet and Datascope, following a recall this summer.

Truvian Sciences raised $27.1 million to fuel the development of its benchtop blood tester, bringing the company’s total funding to $46.3 million.

The money will fund work to develop polymers in multiple indications and an associated U.S. expansion.